Local News

McCrory to sell state helicopter

Posted May 2, 2014

Sikorsky helicopter owned by the state of North Carolina.

— Gov. Pat McCrory said Friday he is putting the state’s helicopter for sale on eBay to trim government costs.

The decision to sell the Sikorsky helicopter was based on its infrequent use and high cost of operation. Jettisoning the chopper will save the state more than $250,000 a year, officials said.

The helicopter cost $265,000 to operate in Fiscal Year 2013. It logged about 417 hours of use from 2007 to 2013 at a cost of about $2.2 million. 

“This is one more example of how state government is operating more efficiently by taking a close look at resources and finding ways to cut costs,” McCrory said in a statement Friday.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation and other state agencies used the helicopter to monitor disaster recovery and take trips for economic development. The department is negotiating a contract with a private helicopter owner for use of the aircraft when needed.

NCDOT did not say how much the helicopter will be listed for on eBay.

The department is working to consolidate its air fleet, which also includes two twin turbo-prop planes and a Cessna Citation Bravo Jet.


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  • "Screen Name-8/20" May 2, 2014

    Why on Ebay where there's listing fees. Why not list it on Craigslist where there are no listing fees, thereby saving the taxpayers a bit more $$$?

  • "Screen Name-8/20" May 2, 2014

    View quoted thread


    If necessary, he can temporarily comandeer a SHP chopper for that.

  • Gene Parsons May 2, 2014
    user avatar

    A helicopter is the most expensive aircraft to operate per hour other than the space shuttle. This is a wise decision. With that being said, the North Carolina Forest Service Air tanker was contracted out to other states during fire season and the last year it operated it made $600,000.00 dollars. Rather than putting that money back in the Forest Service fund, the money was placed in the General fund. The boys in Raleigh stated that they could not afford to operate it and it was sold on ebay for 10 cents on the dollar. This is FACT. Check the records.

  • nufsaid May 2, 2014

    Politics aside, I think this is a wise decision.

  • rushbot May 2, 2014

    did he use this to survey the damage to the environment caused by the coal ash leaks or any of the recent tornadoes..

  • rushbot May 2, 2014

    i would think a state prone to hurricane, tornado and t-storm damage would be able to find a use for a helicopter to deal with things as they happen...

  • SMAPAEA May 2, 2014

    hmmm...wonder what tie to the governor that private helicopter owner has...and how much it's gonna cost...shouldn't that kinda service go out for bid?

  • JohnnyWalker May 2, 2014

    McCrory will instead be using the State's top secret teleportation device at a cost of $1 Billion per year.

  • nufsaid May 2, 2014

    This would have never happened during the Easley administration. It was a handy way to head to many destinations. Including checking out coastal "investments".

  • Justin Case May 2, 2014
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    I recall it was somewhat of a boondoggle when it was 1st purchased during the Easley administration (?). There was very little justification then and even less now. There are few justifiable reasons for the governor or and senior staff or Reps/Senators to need to get across the state at helicopter speeds. If needed, there are plenty of for hire options out there. :-)